Conversations about marriage leave me feeling like a newbie salesman rattling off the features and benefits of a product I’m struggling to sell to an uninterested buyer.
I’ve exhausted every excuse to justify his unwillingness to take the next step. The “still young” and “not financially stable” scenarios have been fatigued and retired.
The trajectory of this relationships relies on the final plausible explanation for this ridiculously delayed marriage proposal. He is behaving like a product of a broken home and lacks real life examples of the reasons we ought to be married by now.
(Read: Is Marriage Worth It for Black Women?)
I’ve run out of answers…
When I imagine what a man might feel like emotionally before he asks his girlfriend/children’s mother to marry, I picture declarations of undying love from movies like ‘The Notebook’ and envision their love story to be as exhilarating as the newlyweds in ‘The Vow.’
I’m inclined to take his reluctance personally and as manifested doubt in the relationship. If there is doubt in the relationship then he is obviously doubting his love for me.
Via Facebook photos I’ve watched the women from my past glow in beautiful white wedding gowns marrying the fathers of their children/loves of their lives. With two kids and a home purchase for our family in the works the stage for marriage has been set, but yet he ignores the cues and is content with our current legal title of ‘single.
Besides our minimal differences our relationship feels rock solid. The love still feels equal and our goals for the future match perfectly. He’s still able to give me butterflies with just one look. He still goes out of his way to right his wrongs despite how minimal they may have been. He listens to my nagging and does his damndest to remember to correct his shortcomings. I still see the same vulnerability in his eyes right before we kiss. When were alone we pick up right where we left off, before the babies, and go right back to being just us, as playful and intimate as ever.
(Read: The Put Off: Can Love Marriage and Family Wait?)
…hence my frustration.
Still, grown folks will tell you to never force a man to marry but what’s the procedure when you’ve been quietly ready and waiting for half a decade and he still won’t bust a move? Do you sit pretty and allow him to make the decision on his own? Or does it become acceptable for a woman to demand answers and actions once a certain amount of time has passed?
If the answer to the former is yes, then I’ve definitely earned my stripes. After beating the hell out of the topic with my should-be husband I’ve been forced to place a time constraint on the vacancy of my right ring finger.
(Read: The Beyonce Doctrine: Thoughts on Womanhood, Marriage, and Money)
Unfortunately for him I know my worth. I am demanding he recognizes and act accordingly or he’ll simply have been warming the slot for another man to hit the jackpot. If marriage isn’t the next step and he still continues to make excuses to not make me his legitimate wife then I will have to begin to live like the legitimately single woman I am.
Opal Stacie is a fresh face on the freelancing scene but a veteran blogger. Check out her blog Vexed in the City.